Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Nature Resting

I finally got to take a walk a few days back and was surprised at how barren and drab the landscape in my little forest preserve had become. It made me reflect upon nature taking a break or nap for the next few months. I shifted that focus to me and my need to be like nature in winter and take some time off too from grief and all this self-processing. It is okay to take a vacation now and then and just be without trying to overcome, grow or self-actualize. We're not machines. Our minds, bodies and spirits need rest and rejuvenation.

I never would have imagined the amount of "work" that goes into coping with a major loss and then the aftermath of going on solo before my husband died. It is a very depleting and exhausting process - one that seems never ending. But I want to take a cue from nature here and spend the next few months restoring my soul - hard when it is so cold out there now. But I need some TLC, not harsh resolutions to start out the new year.

I don't understand anymore how people can go from feasting and merriment one day to the Slim Fast or Special K diet the next. There needs to be a gradual shift from one mind set to the next in order for say, a diet to be successful. On that note, here are my goals for January. I've decided to go for monthly goals instead of resolutions this year.

1. Reduce/delete the emails in my in box. Yesterday I had 5044. That is not a typo. Today I am down to 4300. By month's end it would be wonderful to be left with only 100! We'll see. I have a hard time letting anything go (relationships, possessions, read text messages, memorabilia) - pretty much everything and it got worse when my husband died, hence the great difficulty in having to clear out those storage sheds.

2. Eat better in general. No specific diet. Just watch what I eat more carefully.

3. Try not to leave any dirty dishes in the sink overnight.

4. Put my keys and glasses in the same place so I don't have to run around like a raving banshee two or three times a day trying to locate them.

5. I have a bookshelf filled with old craft magazines. It looks messy. I just want to go through the magazines and get rid of them (donate or recycle) so by the end of January the bookshelf looks attractive and not a mess.

That's it for now. Too many goals doesn't seem like a good idea - too overwhelming. I'm starting out slow and can always add if I complete one before the end of the month. Accomplishing the dishes and being able to find car keys and glasses alone will be a huge improvement in reducing the stress in my life.

11 Things that are Tolerable About Winter:

1. I do like wearing scarves and gloves (the brighter the color combinations the better).

2. Winter food like casseroles, hot chocolate and soup are good.

3. It is enjoyable to bake bread and other goodies.

4. Wearing a coat helps cover any pounds that may creep up from eating casseroles.

5. Fires in fireplaces are nice to snuggle up in front of.

6. I could live in flannel p.j.s all day.

7. It is lovely to sleep under lots of covers and still not be too warm.

8. Because the days are shorter there is more of an excuse to go to bed earlier with a good book, under warm covers in flannel p.j.s drinking a cup of hot chocolate.

9. Warm wool socks and sweaters are great to wear.

10. Nothing says warmth and coziness like a hand knit afghan. Knitting is always better in winter.

11. Snowmen are cute!


  1. love this post. My new year's resolution was to not make any!

    I think you have described so well the similarity to our tortured souls - the pain that we feel, that emptiness ... and the stark landscape of winter.

    Bring on the spring and healing.


  2. I'm with you, although I joined a running group that just formed as a way to meet new people and get some exercise. I'm in the very very slow group, but is just fine with me. Your goals sound like "Flylady"; have you heard of her or her website? It has helped me a lot and I like the support.

  3. The aftermath of going solo is what I face now, since most of the grieving and sorting work is complete. I live a life that's relevant to only me at the end of the day. Kids are grown, friends, family and community return to their own homes, and I have only my cats with me at night. Like you, I've made reasonable resolutions and goals, and it still doesn't chase away the dark. Am I entering a 'dark night of the soul'? If I am, then this gives me meaning for now.

  4. Thanks Boo from visiting from afar. I long for the Spring too but am going to try healing even in this cold, barren winter.

    Leslie - I know of Flylady and have her book. I visited her website years ago before I was more accomplished on the computer and will have to go there again. Yeah for you for joining the running group. Joining the knit club has been a great way for me to start meeting new people too.

    Flo - Very profound reflections and thoughts. My cats sleep with me every night and they are dear companions.